Copy
For more information about Women with Disabilities Victoria please visit our website at www.wdv.org.au.
Women with Disabilities Victoria logo
Welcome to our eNews

The purpose of this e-News is to inform our members, staff and associates about opportunities to advance Women with Disabilities Victoria’s goals. Women with Disabilities Victoria works to address priority issues for women with disabilities in Victoria. These issues include violence; access to health services; reproductive rights and parenting, and; access to employment. We welcome and encourage your feedback and contributions to simone.flanagan@wdv.org.au

In this Issue:
WOMEN WITH DISABILITIES VICTORIA NEWS

A Message from our Executive Director

Photo of Keran Howe, Executive Director
 
Keran Howe
Executive Director

 

Dear Members, 


Season’s Greetings!

2013 has been a busy year at WDV, and 2014 looks set to be even busier! Our Annual Report is now available on our website, but you can also download it here: 
WDV Annual Report Accessible PDF 

Some of the highlights of our work in 2013 have been: 
 
This year the Enabling Women Leadership Program was offered to women with disabilities in Melbourne and Gippsland with some amazing results. We are pleased to announce that we will be offering further programs next year. Dates and locations will be determined in the New Year.
 
2013 was a time for us to re-align our organisational structure to ensure we are in a position to respond to the growing demands on the organisation. We have a new strategic plan to be launched in 2014 that will reflect this.
 
This year has been an extremely important one for people with disabilities. We have witnessed the passing of legislation which has moved the platform for disability services from ad hoc programs to a solid rights-based model of individualised funding, the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
 
Through the sustained leadership and advocacy of WDV and Domestic Violence Victoria member organisations, the ground-breaking Disability Family Violence Crisis Response initiative has passed its pilot stage and received ongoing funding through the Victorian Department of Human Services (DHS).
 
Voices against Violence is our two-year major research project, which commenced in 2011. The research papers will be launched in 2014, when we host a major symposium in April to release and discuss the findings of the Voices against Violence research. Natasha Stott Despoja AM, Chair of the Foundation to Prevent Violence against Women and Children, will be the keynote speaker and will launch the Voices against Violence research papers.
 
In April, WDV launched the report Your Say,Your Rights: a project about information and communication technology and women with disabilities. The report was the culmination of findings from a consultative research project into barriers to information and communication technology access and usage for women with disabilities.
 
This year, we established the Brenda Gabe Leadership Award to recognise and reward women with disabilities who have made a significant contribution to improving the status of women with disabilities in Victoria. Brenda Gabe was a much loved and respected member of WDV who made a positive
difference for women with disabilities.
 
The Director of Future Leaders, Dr Helen Sykes AM presented of the inaugural Brenda Gabe Award at the meeting.   The award is an opportunity for the communities where women are active to recognize the contribution.
 
Nominations came from hospitals and health services, local government and disability service providers who wanted to recognize women with disabilities in their leadership role. In nominating women for an award, the nominators were making a public endorsement of the important leadership these women are making on behalf of WWD across the state
 
The winner Tricia Malowney is a highly respected advocate for people with disabilities who has worked at state, national and international levels in this role. She has used her life experience with polio and post-polio syndrome to inform her advocacy in this area.
 
A full house of over 120 members, organisational representatives and supporters attended our AGM on November 28th.  We’ve had wonderful feedback from a number of those present that the meeting was the best AGM they had ever attended.
 
Guest speaker Stella Young presented a keynote address at the meeting “What can the NDIS do for women with disabilities?”
 
Stella stated: “For too long we’ve lived with an unfair system that has fed a culture of  ‘haves’ and ‘have-nots’ We are on the verge of great change, and change is actually here. There are people already receiving support from the NDIS in Victoria.”
 
She highlighted the fact that there are more than 2 million women with disabilities living in Australia today, and that we experience a double disadvantage.
 
Stella also highlighted that women with disabilities have a lower employment rate and experience a significantly higher rate of violence than disabled men.  If you would like to watch Stella’s speech, you can view it online here: Stella Young: What the NDIS can do for WWD
 
Jenny Macklin, Shadow Minister for Disability, responded to Stella’s speech and Jenny and Stella took questions from the floor.  The questions centred around:
·         the need for the particular issues women with disabilities face being represented in the NDIS funding, for example women with disabilities as parents being supported.
·         The needs of older women with disabilities being addressed within the NDIS
·         The need for support for older women carers within the NDIS.
 
The Director of Future Leaders Dr Helen Sykes AM presented of the inaugural Brenda Gabe Award at the meeting.   The award is an opportunity for the communities where women are active to recognize the contribution.
 
Nominations came from hospitals and health services, local government and disability service providers who wanted to recognize women with disabilities in their leadership role. In nominating women for an award, the nominators were making a public endorsement of the important leadership these women are making on behalf of WWD across the state
 
The winner Tricia Malowney is a highly respected advocate for people with disabilities who has worked at state, national and international levels in this role. She has used her life experience with polio and post-polio syndrome to inform her advocacy in this area.

The Board and staff of WDV wish you a happy, safe and enjoyable festive season.
We would like to wish you all the best for 2014, and thank you for your ongoing support throughout 2013.

Our office will be closed from 5pm Thursday 19th December until 9am Monday 6th January 2014.
 

Image of a Christmas tree with Season'ns Greeting message from WDV  all content displayed as text in body of this email.
 


Media Releases

Inaugural Winner of Brenda Gabe Award Announced.

02/12/2013 

The Brenda Gabe Award recognises and rewards women with disabilities and/or groups who have made a significant contribution to improve the status of women with disabilities in Victoria.

Brenda Gabe was a much loved & respected member of Women with Disabilities Victoria. Brenda played a leading role in gender and disability related campaigns including preventing violence against women with disabilities and making housing and public transport more accessible. 

The Director of Future Leaders Dr Helen Sykes AM made the presentation of the award at WDV’s AGM on Thursday to a full house which included Shadow Minister for Families, Community Services, Indigenous Affairs and Disability Reform, Jenny Macklin.

Helen is the sponsor of the Brenda Gabe Award, generously donating a prize to the Award including professional development to the value of $2000.  This award will be made on an annual basis to recognise a woman or group of women who embody the leadership traits shown by Brenda Gabe.

The Shadow Minister for Disability Reform, Jenny Macklin MP, today congratulated Tricia Malowney on winning the inaugural Brenda Gabe Leadership Award for her outstanding contribution to women with disabilities.

“Through her work as a respected advocate for people with disabilities Tricia has made an enormous contribution to the advancement of women with disability in Victoria. I congratulate her on all she has achieved.

“Women with Disabilities Victoria continues to play an important role in raising the profile of gender within the NDIS, ensuring that the interests of women with disabilities and carers are embedded in the Scheme’s structure. 

“I would also like to thank Keran Howe, Executive Director of Women with Disabilities Victoria, for her continued advocacy on behalf of women with disability and for hosting such an inspiring event."

The award is an opportunity for the communities where women are active to recognize the contribution. Nominations came from hospitals and health services, local government and disability service providers who wanted to recognize women with disabilities in their leadership role.

WDV Executive Director Keran Howe said:

“In nominating women for an award, the nominators were making a public endorsement of the important leadership these women are making on behalf of WWD across the state.”

The winner Tricia Malowney said she hopes to:

Find a leadership program which will not only benefit me personally, but will also enable me to empower other women with disabilities”

Tricia is a highly respected advocate for people with disabilities who has worked at state, national and international levels in this role. She has used her life experience with polio and post-polio syndrome to inform her advocacy in this area. 

Since retiring from a middle management position with Victoria police at age 46, Tricia has led and contributed in a formal capacity to boards, committees and councils championing the rights of people with a disability.

Today’s award particularly looks for the contribution nominees have made to improve the status of women with disabilities in Victoria. The following demonstrates the depth of Tricia’s commitment in this area:

  • Tricia was the convenor and chair of Victorian Women with Disabilities Network during its successful transformation & renaming to Women with Disabilities Victoria (WDV)
  • Tricia was the inaugural Chair of the Royal Women’s Hospital Disability Reference Group.
  • Tricia  worked with others to ensure women with disabilities were included in research policy planning and development of  key initiatives including the Family Violence Protection Act 2006
  • Tricia worked with the Cancer Council and other relevant organisations to support better access to Cancer Screening for Victorian women with Intellectual Disabilities
  • Tricia successfully lobbied for women with disabilities to be included in the United Nations Population Health Research.

We’d also like to take this opportunity to introduce you to the other 24 Brenda Gabe nominees. We are delighted to recognise the wonderful contribution of these dedicated women.  Our appreciation and thanks also go to the nominators for their time and effort in putting the nominees forward.

Our nominees are :

Andrea Murphy
Cathy Clark
Colleen Furlanetto
Jennifer Robinson
Jenny Cheng
Jess Kapuscinski-Evans
Judith Hooper
Kim Ling Chua
Joy Clarke
Lisa Davis
Lynn Lancaster
Melissa Lowrie
Melissa Noonan
Michelle Roger
Norma Seip
Peta Ferguson
Renee Biewer
Sally Smith
Shaunagh Stevens
Tricia Malowney
Val Johnstone
Vanessa Robinson


Bendigo Community Health Service Deafblind Victorians Self-Advocacy Group 
Heather Lawson, Trudy Ryall, Michelle Stevens

Peer Educators – Living Safer Sexual Lives 
Rebecca Davie, Yvette Keane, Kathrene Peters.

This award would not have been possible without the generous support of Dr Helen Sykes the Director of Future Leaders.


Jenny Macklin's Media Release about the award can be found here: Tricia Malowney honoured with Disabilities Award

Violence



Our executive Director Keran Howe was recently interviewed on ABC's PM program:

Women with disabilities at risk of violence
Sarah Sedghi reports via ABC’s PM Monday, November 25, 2013
 
MARK COLVIN: Every week in Australia more than one woman dies at the hands of a current or former partner.
 
Today is White Ribbon Day, a national campaign to end violence against women.
 
It's an important issue for all women, including disabled women who make up 20 per cent of Australia's female population.
 
SARAH SEDGHI: Violence and abuse against women with disabilities is something Keran Howe's organisation has been dealing with for more than 15 years. But it's hard work and resolutions are hard to achieve.
 
KERAN HOWE: What we know is that women with disabilities are targeted by offenders, by perpetrators, who know that it might be that a woman with a cognitive disability is less likely to be believed.
 
SARAH SEDGHI: She is the executive director of Women with Disabilities Victoria. She says that systems needs to better deal with violence against women with disabilities.
 
Click here to read the full transcript or listen to the audio
Disability Support for Women and Children with Disabilities Escaping Family Violence:
This ground-breaking program for women and children with disabilities has passed its pilot stage and will receive ongoing funding.
 
This is a Statewide initiative that assists Victorian women and children with disabilities experiencing family violence who require immediate disability support.
 
Funding is available to meet immediate disability-related support needs for a period of up to 12 weeks to a maximum value of $9,000 per person.
 
Requests for funds over $9,000 will be managed on a case-by-case basis.
The program is designed to complement existing specialist family violence services and supports.
For more information during business hours, contact Disability Family Violence Liaison Officer during:
T: (03) 9843 6312
E: Disabilityfv@dhs.vic.gov.au
For information after hours, contact Woman’s Domestic Violence Crisis Service:
T: (03) 9322 3555 or 1800 015 188 (toll free for country callers)


RESPONDING TO THE ABUSE OF OLDER MEN AND WOMEN
PRACTICE FORUM

Would you know how to respond to an older person experiencing abuse?

The Practice Forum will include presentations on key support services and relevant legislative requirements, followed by a panel discus-sion with cross-sector experts.
The panel will explore the issues of elder abuse; and discuss how to provide a timely, effective and respectful response to older persons experiencing abuse.

PRACTICE FORUM DETAILS
When: Thursday, 20th February, 2014
Time: 10 am to 3 pm
Where: Function Room 4Civic Centre, Knox City Council 511 Burwood Highway, Wantirna South
RSVP by 7th February 2014 to
DianeC@safefutures.org.au
When confirming your attendance, please advise whether you have any special needs or dietary requirements.

Regrettably, due to the fact that they have limited numbers, if you register to attend the forum but are not present on the day, and your organisation does not send an alternate representative, your organisation will be invoiced a $100 fee.
 

Legal barriers for people with disability - ALRC Issues Paper released
The Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) recently released an Issues Paper, Equality, Capacity and Disability in Commonwealth Laws (IP 44), calling for submissions to its Disability Inquiry.

The ALRC has been asked to review Commonwealth laws and legal frameworks that may deny or diminish the equal recognition of people with disability as persons before the law, including how these laws affect their ability to exercise legal capacity, and what, if any, changes could be made to address this inequality.

The purpose of this Inquiry is to ensure that Australian laws and legal frameworks are responsive to the needs of people with disability and advance, promote and respect their rights. The Issues Paper asks over 40 questions about how the law might treat people with disability unfairly in areas including: employment, health, social security, banking, insurance, restrictive practices, access to justice, aged care, and anti-discrimination.

ALRC President Professor Rosalind Croucher, Commissioner-in-charge of the Inquiry stated, “We want to hear from people across the community about the issues they face in these various spheres on a daily basis. Understanding the experiences of people with disability—for example, in relation to voting, to being on a jury, forming relationships or getting married and having children, of supported and substituted decision-making, of guardianship and aged care—is going to be key as we investigate the myriad of ways in which people with disability may be treated unfairly by the laws in question. Submissions will help us to develop our proposals for reforming the laws to make them fairer.”

Disability Discrimination Commissioner, Graeme Innes AM who is a Part-Time Commissioner in this inquiry stated “This is an important issue across the disability field, and it will be really valuable to hear as many views as possible from across the sector”.

In undertaking this Inquiry, the ALRC has been asked specifically to identify and consult with people with disability who are also children, women, Indigenous people, older people, people in rural, remote and regional areas, people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people. The ALRC also wants to hear from the representatives and the families and carers of people with disability. To assist in this national and wide-reaching consultation process, the ALRC has also produced an Easy English version of the Issues Paper.

The ALRC invites individuals and organisations to make submissions in response to specific questions, or to any of the background material and analysis contained in the Issues Paper.

* The Issues Paper is available free of charge on the ALRC website at www.alrc.gov.au/publications/disability-IP44
* The Easy English IP is at www.alrc.gov.au/easy-english-ip-44
* The ALRC prefers submissions via the ALRC online submission form: www.alrc.gov.au/content/disability-ip44-make-submission

Submissions are due to the ALRC on Monday 20 January 2014.

The ALRC plans to release a Discussion Paper in April 2014 will provide its final report to the Attorney-General by August 2014
 


Stop the Violence Project (STVP)
National Symposium Communique – violence prevention and response for women and girls with disabilities.
 
On 25 October 2013, the Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Women, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash opened the Stop the Violence Project (STVP) National Symposium  -  violence prevention and response for women and girls with disabilities. 

The National Symposium was hosted by Sex Discrimination Commissioner and Chair of the Stop the Violence Project Steering Group, Ms Elizabeth Broderick.

The need for targeted measures to address violence against women and girls with disabilities, in order for them to participate as full and equal citizens in Australian society, has been identified as a priority in the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010-2022.  The National Plan recognises that in Australia, women and girls with disabilities experience high levels of domestic and family violence and sexual assault, and have high unmet needs in terms of access to domestic violence, sexual assault and related community services.

In her opening address, Minister Cash delivered a message from the Prime Minister, the Hon Tony Abbott MP:
“Violence against women and girls is utterly unacceptable. It is unacceptable in Australia and unacceptable across the world.   The Stop the Violence National Symposium is confronting the serious issue of violence against women and girls. In particular it will focus on confronting violence against women and girls with disabilities.  The Symposium is also promoting the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children.  I am working with my colleague and Minister Assisting for Women, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash, to ensure the National Plan is implemented, is effective and supports our most vulnerable.  I congratulate Women With Disabilities Australia, People With Disability Australia and the University of New South Wales for your work on the Stop the Violence Project and for organising this event.  I send my best wishes for a successful event.”

Minister Cash also stated:
“We are all here today to recognise the very particular needs of women with disabilities who experience violence. It’s a fact, we all know it, that women with disabilities are more vulnerable to violence than other women. Many women with a disability face additional problems in accessing appropriate support, and we all know the reality is that fewer have the option of escaping violence. We also hear, very disappointingly, of too many stories of violence within supported care and residential care facilities.  Again, completely, totally and utterly unacceptable….”
 “…In relation to the National Plan, many of you whom I had the opportunity of meeting with when I was the Shadow Parliamentary Secretary would know that I am 110 per cent committed to the implementation of the National Plan.  We are now at the end of the first phase of the National Plan… We have made some great progress under phase one. However, there is still work to do. The Prime Minister and I are committed to working with each and every one of you to ensure that the next phase of the National Plan ensures that we take a step-up in reducing violence against women and children.”

 
Commissioner Broderick warmly welcomed the commitment to National Plan implementation made by the Prime Minister and Minister Cash.  She highlighted the recent recommendation made by the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities “that Australia should include a more comprehensive consideration of women with disabilities in public programs and policies on the prevention of gender based violence, particularly so as to ensure access for women with disabilities to an effective integrated response system”.
 
The first plenary session of the National Symposium outlined the key issues in violence and women and girls with disabilities.  President of Women With Disabilities Australia (WWDA), Ms Karin Swift provided an introduction to the issue, providing information on the higher prevalence of all forms violence experienced by women with disability, and stating that “when gender and disability intersect, violence has unique causes, takes on unique forms and results in unique consequences”. 
As part of a panel, four women with disabilities presented on their experience and knowledge of the diverse and unique ways that violence occurs and affects women and girls with disabilities:

•             Ms Gayle Rankine, Chairperson of First Peoples Disability Network (FPDN) highlighted the lack of support and protection and the greater risks for Indigenous                       women with disability in urban, rural and remote settings. 
•             Ms Nihal Iscel, Advocacy Manager, Ethnic Disability Advocacy Centre WA outlined issues for women with disability from non-English speaking and culturally and                   linguistically diverse backgrounds.
•             Ms Janice Slattery, Self-Advocate and Peer Educator and Researcher discussed issues for women with intellectual disability and the research and training she                     conducts in this area.
•             Ms Margie Charlesworth, Vice-President of WWDA spoke about barriers to accessing justice for women with communication impairments, who are often not                         believed or viewed as credible.
 
The second plenary of the National Symposium outlined the challenges and opportunities for change, and was introduced by Disability Discrimination Commissioner, Mr Graeme Innes. 

Commissioner Innes outlined the gaps in both the current legislative and policy frameworks that focus on disability and those that focus on the prevention of violence against women.  These gaps largely arise “because the intersection between gender and disability is generally not taken into account… and because legislative and policy frameworks lack a human rights context in relation to the human rights treaties that Australia has ratified”.

The second panel was made up of researchers, practitioners and advocates, who provided an overview of key gaps in a range of service systems, including disability, mental health and justice service systems. 

•             Ms Debbie Kilroy, CEO of Sisters Inside discussed the specific risks of violence and the barriers embedded in the justice system for women with disabilities, and                   presented disturbing examples of situations experienced  by women  with disabilities.
•             Dr Gabrielle Drake, lecturer and researcher at the University of Western Sydney described the appalling situation experienced by women with disabilities living in                 boarding houses in NSW, and the daily risks of violence they experience in these institutional settings.
•             Dr Leanne Dowse, Senior Researcher at UNSW for the STVP outlined the evidence gathering process, the key areas identified for further action and the                               implications of the findings for good policy and practice.
 
In the afternoon, participants worked in pre-assigned groups to identify key issues, measures and actions to address the eight key themes emerging from the evidence base:
•             Information, Education and Capacity Building for Women and Girls with Disabilities
•             Awareness Raising for the Broader Community
•             Education and Training for Service Providers
•             Service Sector Development and Reform
•             Legislation, National Agreements and Policy Frameworks
•             Evidence Gathering, Research and Development
•             Establishment and Development of the Virtual Centre for the Prevention of Violence Against Women and Girls with Disabilities
•             Establishment of a National High Level Inter-Agency Taskforce on the Prevention of Violence Against Women and Girls with Disabilities
 
The information obtained from workshops will inform the principles, strategies and actions needed to ensure effective violence prevention and response for women and girls with disabilities.  These will be outlined in the National Symposium Report of Proceedings and Outcomes to be provided to the Department of Social Services, and publicly released shortly after.
Commissioner Broderick closed the National Symposium, thanking participants for their commitment and hard work throughout the day:
“The National Symposium enabled experts from a broad range of policy and service sectors to assist in identifying measures for cross-sector service system reform.    However, this is only the beginning of discussion on this important issue, and the day’s deliberations have given a sound platform for further work and improvements for women and girls with disabilities who experience, or are at risk of violence.  We need to ensure that this sound platform is part of phase two of the National Plan, as this is critical to ensure that violence prevention and response is inclusive of women and girls with disabilities.”
 
 Further information about the National Symposium, including the Background Paper, Discussion Paper, presentation podcasts and transcripts and the Report of Proceedings and Outcomes are available on the STVP website, www.stvp.org.au 
About the STVP
The STVP is being undertaken by Women with Disabilities Australia (WWDA) with support from People with Disability Australia (PWDA) and the University of New South Wales (UNSW).  It has been funded by the Department of Social Services (DSS) through its National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010-2022.  

The STVP also aligns with the National Disability Strategy 2010-2020 (NDS), which was formally endorsed by the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) on 13 February 2011. 

The STVP is overseen by a Project Steering Group (PSG), which is chaired by Ms Elizabeth Broderick, Sex Discrimination Commissioner at the Australian Human Rights Commission.  

Queensland is not represented on the PSG, but is participating in out-of-session discussions and activities. The Queensland point of contact for the STVP is the Violence Prevention Team, Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services.
The STVP is based on the vision and foundational work of Ms Carolyn Frohmader, Executive Director, Women With Disabilities Australia.  

 



Health & Access to Health Services


The NDIA has released its draft Strategic Plan for 2013-2016 and are inviting people with disability, their families and carers, service providers and the general community to comment on the document.

As this is the inaugural Strategic Plan for the NDIA and will lay the foundations for the next three years, the NDIA Board wishes to undertake broad stakeholder consultation on the Strategic Plan.

Comments need to be submitted by Thursday 16 January 2014.
http://www.ndis.gov.au/document/671

 

Access to Employment

Workforce Development Program on Gender and Disability
Train the Trainer Expression of Interest


Are you committed to gender equity and preventing violence against women with disabilities?

Would you like to be part of an innovative organisational cultural change program that aims to improve the delivery of disability services to women with disabilities?

Interested in learning how to provide training to disability service organisations about how to deliver gender sensitive and equitable services?

We are pleased to announce that Women with Disabilities Victoria (WDV) have been funded under Victoria’s Action Plan to Address Violence Against Women & Children 2012-2015 to deliver a Gender and Disability Workforce Development Program, and are seeking applications from professional trainers and women with disabilities to undertake a train the trainer package as part of this innovative project aimed at preventing violence against women with disabilities.

Ten professional trainers (both men and women with or without a disability), and ten women with disabilities will be selected to undertake train the trainer Gender Equity and Disability package.

Professional trainers and women with disabilities together as co-facilitators will be trained to facilitate the delivery of the Gender and Disability learning package, which will be delivered to support workers and CEO’s and Managers from disability services organisations. This package will be piloted in two pilot sites, Melbourne and Geelong.

Professional development opportunity
Successful candidates will be able to apply for roles in the delivery of the training in the pilot sites. Future opportunities for delivery of the training packages beyond the pilot sites will be subject to WDV gaining funding for state-wide roll out of the training.

 

Information Sessions and Application

To apply to undertake this training please submit your application form, key selection criteria and a current resume by the close of business on Friday the 7th of February 2014.

WDV will be holding two information session about the train the trainer program, application requirements and application process. Sessions will be held in the Melbourne CBD on Wednesday the 22nd of January 2014 at 10:30 – 1:00 pm or 6:00 – 7:30 pm.

To RSVP to an information session or ask any questions regarding the training please email Pip pip.robertson@wdv.org.au or phone (03) 9286 7809.

Please refer to the Expression of Interest Application and Key Selection criteria in English and Easy English on our website at www.wdv.org.au

The media release from the Victoria Government is available here -
http://www.premier.vic.gov.au/media-centre/media-releases/8185-new-initiative-to-address-violence-against-women-with-disability.html

 


Advocacy, Leadership & Representation

Celebrating the 21st anniversary of International Day of People with a Disability, YouTube clips featuring 21 year olds from across Australia who have a disability speaking about their life experiences have recently been launched. ‘Enabling Women’ graduate Tess has contributed a clip and this can be found at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ya5LGdBlaVI 



Peer Support Network for Disability Advocates

This network gives Advocates the opportunity to learn from each other, in relation to our advocacy practice and how we as advocates:

  • Achieve results for people with disabilities
  • Approach our work
  • Understand the environment we live and work in
  • Understand and apply a human rights approach
  • Debrief, self manage and build resilience

This network is for individual advocates working for a disability advocacy organisation funded by DHS or the Department of Social Services (formerly FaHCSIA).

At the next peer support meeting, Robyn Gaile, DARU Coordinator has been invited to  facilitate a short planning session towards the end of the meeting to:

  • establish a calendar of peer support meeting dates for 2014
  • identify which participating agencies have the capacity to support the network through providing meeting rooms or contributing in some other way.
  • determine  the need and structure of an email contact list for advocates.

Cost: FREE
Provider/Organiser
Leadership Plus & Communication rights Australia

Contact Person:
Melanie Muir
Phone number
(03) 9489 2999
Email: mmuir@leadershipplus.com
 
 
DISABILITY DISCRIMINATION LEGAL SERVICE - NEW TELEPHONE SERVICE
 
Disability Discrimination Legal service has a new telephone service which provides legal assistance for discrimination matters in all areas. If someone believes that because of the attributes of race, sex, age, pregnancy, religion or other attributes they have been treated unfairly then we can assist with free legal assistance. This includes advice, writing letters, engaging in negotiations and representing the person at conciliation or court hearing.
 
This service runs on Thursday between 6.30 pm and 8.30pm. The service would have both a phone-in and an outreach system to access clients. Such clients would be provided with advice and assistance and then referred to the casework lawyer to determine which matters will be taken as cases for dispute resolution
 
The service would use the casework experience and knowledge to skill up community groups and community legal centres in taking action under discrimination law and to make appropriate referrals.   Advice would also be provided to CLC lawyers and community workers where needed in order to support them to assist their clients. Community information sessions include providing education to the general public about discrimination
 

 
 
DPTAC Terms of Reference and work plan
The Disabled Persons Taxi Advisory Committee (DPTAC) was established to receive timely and regular input from people with a disability and peak disability advocacy organisations, regarding the performance of taxi services including the Multi-Purpose Taxi Program (MPTP).
Taxi industry stakeholders are valuable contributors to the effective development of policies and procedures. The Taxi Services Commission (TSC) aims to build partnerships with its stakeholders by formalising its relationships so that communication is constructive and two-way. DPTAC meets three times a year for approximately two hours duration. Sub-committees may be convened as required.

 More information can be found on their webite: http://www.taxi.vic.gov.au/passengers/travelling-with-a-disability/disability-persons-taxi-advisory-committee


 

 


Accessibility & Social Inclusion


Inquiry into Social Inclusion for People with Disability

The Coalition Government has asked the Victorian Parliament’s Family and Community Development Committee to inquire into the issue of social inclusion and Victorians with a disability.

Social inclusion is a goal of the Victorian State Disability Plan 2013-12016 that the Coalition Government released last year.

This parliamentary inquiry will give us greater insight into where as a state and community we currently are sitting in terms of social inclusion for people with disability, and how we can improve.

The Committee is to report by 6 August 2014. Specifically, it has been asked to:

 a) define social inclusion for Victorians with a disability;

b) identify the nature and scale of relative inclusion (exclusion) and participation of Victorians with a disability in the economic, social and civil dimensions of society;

(c) understand the impact of Victorian government services and initiatives aimed at improving inclusion and participation;

(d) identify examples of good practice on inclusion and participation driven by local government and the community sector;

(e) assess how the Disability Act 2006 has impacted on the social inclusion of people with a disability with respect to Victorian government services; and

(f) recommend ways to increase social inclusion, including the roles of and collaboration between local, state and federal governments, the community sector, individuals with a disability and their carers.

To find out about the progress of the inquiry and opportunities to contribute, email the Committee administrator at fcdc@parliament.vic.gov.au
 


  • Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC)

    The ALRC has been asked to review Commonwealth laws and legal frameworks that may deny or diminish the equal recognition of people with disability as persons before the law, including how these laws affect their ability to exercise legal capacity, and what, if any, changes could be made to address this inequality.
    The Issues Paper asks over 40 questions about how the law might treat people with disability unfairly in areas including: employment, health, social security, banking, insurance, restrictive practices, access to justice, aged care, and anti-discrimination.
    In undertaking this Inquiry, the ALRC has been asked specifically to identify and consult with people with disability who are also children, women, Indigenous people, older people, people in rural, remote and regional areas, people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people. The ALRC also wants to hear from the representatives and the families and carers of people with disability.
    The ALRC invites individuals and organisations to make submissions in response to specific questions, or to any of the background material and analysis contained in the Issues Paper.
    Submissions are due to the ALRC on 20 January 2014.
    The ALRC plans to release a Discussion Paper in April 2014 and will provide its final report to the Attorney-General by August 2014.
    Download Issues Paper (PDF or HTML)
    Download Issues Paper (Easy English)
    Online submission form

Parliament of Victoria

The Coalition Government has asked the Victorian Parliament’s Family and Community Development Committee to inquire into the issue of social inclusion and Victorians with a disability.
Social inclusion is a goal of the Victorian State Disability Plan 2013-12016 that the Coalition Government released last year.
This parliamentary inquiry will give us greater insight into where as a state and community we currently are sitting in terms of social inclusion for people with disability, and how we can improve.
The Committee is to report by 6 August 2014. Specifically, it has been asked to:
 a) define social inclusion for Victorians with a disability;
b) identify the nature and scale of relative inclusion (exclusion) and participation of Victorians with a disability in the economic, social and civil dimensions of society;
(c) understand the impact of Victorian government services and initiatives aimed at improving inclusion and participation;
(d) identify examples of good practice on inclusion and participation driven by local government and the community sector;
(e) assess how the Disability Act 2006 has impacted on the social inclusion of people with a disability with respect to Victorian government services; and
(f) recommend ways to increase social inclusion, including the roles of and collaboration between local, state and federal governments, the community sector, individuals with a disability and their carers.
Visit the website for terms of reference and submission instructions or email the Committee administrator at fcdc@parliament.vic.gov.au
Submissions are due by 28February 2014.
Inquiry website 
 


Just for fun!

Stella Young - A Stellar Career 
Life at Another Level Blog
http://www.abc.net.au/rampup/articles/2013/12/16/3912334.htm
A new audio only iPhone game suitable for people who are blind - or anyone who wants a challenge!
 

Copyright © 2013 Women with Disabilities Victoria, All rights reserved.



All of our contact information can further be found at wdv.org.au/contact_us.htm.


Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp